6 Simplenote Tips and Tricks You Should Know

We recently reviewed Simplenote; it is a great minimal note taking application that is perfect for people who just wants a straight forward tool to jot down text wherever they are and whatever they are doing. While The UI of Web Apps, Mobile Apps (or ever Desktop apps) is a toolbar-less and minimal, there are many features in Simplenote that first-time users might miss. So, to help you in getting most out of the service, here are some of the best Simplenote tips and tricks that you should know.

Use Markdown to format text

If you have been using the app and never tried Markdown, you are missing probably the best feature of the app. In all the apps, you won’t find to make text bold, add hyperlinks or do any other formatting. Instead of having buttons to do that, Simplenote relies on Markdown – a markup language to stylize text.

You can enable Markdown in any Simplenote note by clicking on Info button and then clicking on the toggle next to Markdown.

Enable Markdown in Simplenote
Enable Markdown in Simplenote

You can learn more about it here, but following are the basics to get you started:

# Name of heading one

## This is heading 2

### this one is heading three

*here is italics text*

**This text is in bold**

***Here are both at the same time***

[This is for a link](http://gettinggeek.com)

Writing the above will look like the following in Simplenote:

markdown example in simplenote

Export all your notes

If you like to keep a local backup of all your online activities, Simplenote has got you covered. Strangely, the desktop apps don’t have an export feature, but you can export all of your notes in a .zip format using the official web app.

To export all your notes from Simplenote:

  • Go to app.simplenote.com
  • If asked, Enter your email and password to sign-in
  • On the top left corner of the window, click on your email ID.
  • Click on Download Zip

Sync Simplenote with other note taking apps

Unlike Microsoft Onenote or Google Keep, Simplenote can be accessed using third party apps; there are not many out there, but if you need something specific, the available ones are worth checking out.

Probably the most popular is nvALT 2, it is a simple Mac app to take notes quickly using keyboard shortcuts. Once installed, you can sync your notes created on nvALT with Simplenote by heading over to Sync in settings and entering your Simplenote credentials.

Some other apps are ResophNotes (for Windows) and nvPY (for Linux)

Publish your notes to the web directly

Probably one of the unique features of Simplenote is its ability to let you publish notes directly to the internet. If you need to share a note with a lot of people where you are not sure if they use Simplenote, you can use this feature.

To publish a Simplenote note to the web:

  • Click on Share button in the app
  • Select the Publish
  • Toggle the Make public link to On.
hpw to publish notes in simplenote
Publishing notes in Simplenote

Once you are done, you can copy the URL of note and then share it with others via email or social media.

Set a Passcode on Simplenote

Many people use note taking apps to save valuable data that might be personal, if you have saved some sensitive information in the app, you might want to prevent others from accessing it. To do this, both mobile apps (iOS and Android) support setting passcodes on the app to prevent anyone who does not have the passcode.

To set a passcode on Simplenote app, do the following:

  • Open the Simplenote and go to Settings.
  • Under Pin Lock, tap on Turn PIN Lock On
  • Create a PIN and re-enter it to verify.

Once you have done that, the app will automatically lock itself on the phone.

Currently, there is no option in desktop apps to set a passcode or password, however, it may be added in future.

Learn Keyboard Shortcuts

You can only be as fast as you type on a keyboard, if you know how to perform certain commands on your keyboard, there will be less need to take your hands out of it and to reach the mouse.

Here are keyboard shortcuts for Windows version of Simplenote:

Ctrl-n Create New Note
Ctrl-f Move focus to the search box
Ctrl-+ Increase font size
Ctrl- – Decrease font size
Ctrl-0 Reset font size

 

And following are the keyboard shortcuts of Mac version of Simplenote app:

Command-n New Note
Command-p Print Note
Control-tab Move focus to tags
Command-l Move focus to search box
Command-+ Increase the font size
Command- – Decrease the font size
Command-0 Reset font size back to default

Have other Simplenote Tips and Tricks?

Do you know about other Simplenote tips and tricks that others should too? Which feature of the app do you love most? Share with others in the comments below.

READ NEXT: How not to become script kiddie?

Simplenote Review: A Great Note Taking app, But Not For Everyone

In this Simplenote review, we will discuss if it is any good for you or you should stick with Microsoft Onenote or Evernote.

Nota taking is something that people of all ages need to do at least sometimes in their lives. If don’t need to jot down something every day or every week, you may be okay with just the default note taking the app that came on your phone, but if you need to, then having a powerful and easy to access note taking app in your weaponry can make your life so much better. Simplenote is one of the most famous note taking apps and I have been using it since last month for a full Simplenote Review.

Simplenote review

Simplenote Main Screen

Basics, Installation and First Impressions

Simplenote is available for web, iOS, Android, Windows, Linux and MacOS. If you are one of the very few people who use Windows Phone, I guess you should be sticking with Microsoft’s own OneNote.

You can download the app for your device and start using it without needing to signup for the service, however, If you use Simplenote, I will recommend you to create a free Simplenote account as it will then sync your notes to all of your devices.

I have used Simplenote on Windows 10, MacOS and Android devices, while most features are available on all platforms, In my opinion, Simplenote’s app feels a bit more polished on MacOS.

Just like Onenote or Evernote, installation of Simplenote is pretty straight forward. On a Windows PC, simply download the installer from the site and run through the setup. The Windows app is based on a framework named Electron. It works, when I was on my secondary laptop (5th Gen Intel Core i3, 1TB 5400 RPM HDD, 4 GB RAM and Windows 10), I found that launch time right after booting was painfully slow.

Once started, the app is pretty snappy and easy to use.

On all desktop versions and on Web too, Simplenote’s UI is divided into two columns, on the left side, you can find a list of all created notes, and on the right side, you can edit or preview these notes. There is a search box on the top of note-list which works well. You can sort notes by either date or creation or by date of the last viewing. If you need, any note can be pinned to the top of the list with just the a click.

There is no way for you to categorize notes except using tags. I liked OneNote’s Notebook and section approach, and it would be great to see something similar here too.

Features

Simplenote looks modern and minimalistic on all platforms. On mobile apps, you can set a passcode to stop others from accessing your notes which is good to have.

When you are creating notes, you won’t find any option to customize the text or font size. There are no toolbar buttons to make text Bold or underlined. Worse for many people, you cant add photos or videos to your notes. Regarding text formatting, there is only one way you can stylize the text: using Markdown.

In case you missed it, Markdown is a standard syntax to stylize text similar to HTML except for simpler. For example, writing

 

* Item

* Item

- Item

- Item

 

Results in:

  • Item
  • Item
  • Item
  • Item

 

You can learn more about Markdown here.

So, if you want to stylize/format the text, you will have to learn markdown. Once you have known the basics of it, you can click on the ‘Info’ button on an active note and enable it.

Syncing

Free syncing to unlimited devices is a good addition because the notes are text only, you don’t need much bandwidth/data to sync notes. Keep in mind that your app settings are not synced. However, tags, markdown settings for individual posts and notes along with all revision history are synced.

Note Sharing

Sharing a note is a one-click affair. On all platforms, you can find a share button in the editor. Hit the button and you are presented with two options, you can either invite others to edit or collaborate on the notes in real time or you can publish the note to Simplenote’s website and share the URL with your friends.

Note sharing in Simplenote
Note sharing in Simplenote

Publish is a cool feature that is not available in most of the other note taking applanations.

Customization in Simplenote

Simplenote is more customizable than Google Keep, but compared to OneNote or Evernote, Simplenote falls short. Simplenote has two color schemes, Dark and Light.

"<yoastmark

The fonts can be made larger or smaller by pressing CTRL+= or CTRL+ – on the keyboard. Also, you can switch between three levels styles of note listing on the list of notes.

Apart from the above, if you want to change something, you are out of luck. (technically, as the applications are open source, you can do change it however you want. But seriously. )

Using Simplenote in real life

Over my use of Simplenote for more than one year, I have liked Simplenote a lot, Typing some characters on keyboard and seeing it turned into a Heading or Underlined text is great for me, but there have been many situations where I really wanted the app to have photo support.

I thing Simplenote is a great app for people who never have to add images or to-do lists in their notes.

And there has been some annoyment too; the Windows app keeps nagging me to download and install the updates manually instead of doing it in the background. Also, you cant run more than one instance of the app at once. Meaning if you want to refer to another note while creating one, you will need to toggle between them back and forth which is annoying as heck.

I don’t know why, but I had lost a note when I was writing it due to an app crash, it has happed only once, though, so it might have been the fault of OS. Please keep in mind that this was on Windows.

Conclusion

Simplenote is a great note taking app for its simplicity, but it’s not for you if want to use photos or you want easy formatting of text. If you are someone who wants a distraction free and straightforward app to jot down your thoughts, Simplenote is great. However, OneNote and Evernote still beat Simplenote when it comes to featues and if you are using one of them, it is probably not worth moving to Simplenote.

Have you used Simplenote? How was your experience? Share with us in the comments below.

Further Reading:

Evernote vs Simplenote: Which One is Better for You?

In the Note-taking app crowd, Evernote and Simplenote are two best and unique apps. In this post, we will take a look at Evernote vs Simplenote and we will decide which one among them is better for you and why.

Evernote and Simplenote both are made to do the same job: to help you in taking notes. But, their philosophies are and how both apps work radically different and this is why learning which one is better for you is really important when you are deciding your default note-taking tool.

Evernote vs Simplenote

Simplenote and Evernote both are some of the best note taking applications currently available on market. Evernote Inc. and Auttomatic both have been in this market for quite some time.

Evernote has been around for more than just a few years, on the other hand, Auttomatic simply bought the app and made it completely free for everyone.

Simplenote is free, Evernote is not

Simplenote is free. There was a paid premium version of Simplenote in its early days but since its acquisition by Auttomatic, the Premium version has been merged with the free version. Meaning all features such as syncing, Publishing and revisions can be used without paying any money.

evernote vs simplenote : pricing
Pricing of Evernote

On the other hand, Evernote has a paid tier, and if you are into serious note taking, you may need to shell out some cash for it. Without the paid tier, you won’t be able to use offline notebooks and you will also be limited to 60 MB of notes per months. So, if you are looking for a free note taking app that doesn’t have any usage restriction, you should go for Simplenote (or OneNote as Microsoft has made the note taking app completely free).

Creating and Managing notes

Evernote should be a great choice for most people because it does almost everything and it has most features that a note-taking ninja may need.

In Evernote, you can organize the notes into notebooks, that can be opened and closed whenever needed. Switching between notes is also very easy. Writing notes into Evernote is very similar to Microsoft Word or other word processing apps. You can draw, Format text, create check-lists and so on.

Simplenote is a lot restrictive compared to Evernote and it doesn’t let you divide notes in folders or sections. Instead, you can add tags to your notes and later find and sort notes based on these tags.

In Evernote, you will be able to add text, images, to-dos, audio clips and a lot more directly to your notes. Whereas in Simplenote, you will be limited to entering only text within your notes. (You can create lists, but there is no option currently to cross-off items from it.

Simplenote
Simplenote has a really simple UI

Also, Simplenote has no support for images, if you paste an image from a web page, Simplenote will convert it to a link that can be opened in a web browser. For this single reason, Evernote should be the winner for most users in Evernote vs Simplenote debate.

Simplenote has some great features too

Granted that Evernote has image support and other tons of bells and whistles, Simplenote is still favorite for many known writers, publishers and developers. The reason behind this is in Simplenote’s convenience and attention to polish. Simplenote has some features that Evernote that are not available on any note taking apps. For example, you can directly publish a note on the internet and send a link to your friend to read it. Unlike other services, it just works, two clicks and boom- you don’t even have to launch a web browser. Also, if you know about markdown, you will feel right to home with Simplenote as it has (probably) the beset markdown support in any note taking app.

After using OneNote for 2 Years, I have switched to Simplenote
After using OneNote for 2 Years, I have switched to Simplenote

Simplenote’s syncing is also great and it’s android and iOS apps are great to let you take notes on the go. With a UI as minimalistic as Simplenote, it helps a lot in focusing on your work rather than searching within tons of toolbars.

Performance

Both, Simplenote and Evernote are available for all common platforms. In my opinion, Evernote looks and works best on Windows and Simplenote’s OS X app feels more polished than its apps for other platforms. Things start to get interesting when you look at mobile platforms. Evernote’s apps are great enough for simple takes but they may feel a bit too complicated sometimes and Simplenote on android feels snappy but it loses its markdown feature, you can still see the notes, but it won’t be the markdown preview. The crown for performance between Simplenote and Evernote should go in favor of Simplenote. Simplenote’s apps are ridiculously small for both major mobile platforms. The Android version sizes 4 MB to download and not only the small size makes it faster in installation but also it makes the app feel really snappy on using.

So, which one should you pick?

So after looking on different aspects of these note taking apps, which one is really better? Evernote or Simplenote?

Evernote is a great app for almost everybody

Granted that the apps may feel sometimes bloated, Evernote is still the best Note taking solution for normal users. Not only the apps are feature rich but also Evernote has better flexibility than Simplenote. In case you need to work with photos or you are a student, Evernote is the only winner for you in Simplenote vs Evernote comparison.

creating a note in evernote
Credit: Evernote.com

Simplenote is good for some specific users. Writers, Bloggers and creative people find its minimalism useful and it helps in keeping attentions on taking notes rather than formatting it or in finding and using fancy features. Programmers and developers love Simplenote’s excellent markdown support. If you need to focus while jotting down notes and you don’t have needs for image support or a stylus, you should be going with Simplenote.

Which one is your favorite?

After talking about Evernote vs Simplenote on many points, which one do you use to take notes and why? Share with others in the comments below.


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OneNote Vs Simplenote : Which one should you choose?

Lets compare two of the greatest Note taking apps made in this century.

Its 2016, and still mankind has not been able to build a perfect note taking app. Almost all of them have some kind of flaw. Some are too bloated, some are too basic and some (Looking at you, EverNote) are too expensive for what they have to offer. In the Note-taking app crowd, OneNote and Simplenote are two best and unique apps. In this post, we will take a look at in Onenote vs Simplenote , which one is better for you and why.

Onenote vs Simplenote

Simplenote and OneNote both are some of the best apps ever made. Microsoft and Auttomatic both have been in this market for some time. Whereas Microsoft has built OneNote and sold it with other Microsoft Office apps for years Auttomatic has simply bought the app and made it completely free for everyone.
When thinking about Onenote vs Simplenote , the differences are not just these. As the philosophy and overall feel for both note-taking apps is completely different.

Creating Notes

The best notebook is one that you have everytime, SimpleNote and Onenote both are more than enough to cover your note taking need in an instant.

Onenote has a full wordprocessor style UI where you can create and format notes as you wish, to take a note, simply click on any empty place and start hitting your keyboard. In Simplenote, you also have same convenince as Onenote – except for one thing, you cant format any note more than Markdown. There are no options for you to change text colors or to instet any thing other than text. OneNote has great support for stylus, whereas Simplenote does not have it at all.

In Onenote, you can write, draw, insert images and audio recordings. In Simplenote, you are striittly limited to plain text that can be used with markdown. If you paste a image from a web page, Simplenote will convert it to a link to image that can be opened in a web browser.

Managing notes

When deciding between Onenote vs Simplenote , OneNote is great for most people because it does so much and it has most features that a simple user may need.
Instead of listing a endless amount of notes on a sidebar, OneNote lets you create separate Notebooks and sections. You can create a notebook for Work and one for your home or hobby.
Simplenote is a bit restrictive on notes management as it doesn’t let you divide notes in folders or sections. Instead, you can add tags to your notes and later find and sort notes based on tags.
For this single reason, Onenote should be the winner for most users in Onenote vs Simplenote debate.

Onenote vs simplenote

Also Read: Best Onenote alternatives

Simplenote has some great plus points too

Granted that Onenote has extra features, Simplenote is still favorite for many known writers and publishers. The reason lies in convenience and attention to polish.
Simplenote has some features that Onenote simply cant offer. For example, you can directly publish a note on the internet and send a link to your friend to read it. Unlike other services, It just works, two clicks and boom- you don’t even have to launch a web browser.
Not just that, Simplenote has good Fantastic markdown support.
for an example, to make a sentence to H1 simple Place a # in front of it.
Also, a UI as minimalist as Simplenote will definalety help you in focusing on your work rather than searching within tons of toolbars.

Performance and cross platform availability

Both of the apps are available for almost all common platforms. Onenote looks and works best on Windows. Whereas Simplenote ‘s OS X app feels more polished than other platforms. Android apps are a different story though, OneNote is good enough for simple takes but feels too complicated sometimes. Simplenote on android feels snappy but it looses its markdown feature.
Debate on performance between Simplenote and Onenote goes in favor of Simplenote. The apps are ridiculously small for both platforms. The Android version sizes 4 MB to download not only it makes it faster in installation but also overall the app is far more faster in operation.

So, Which one should you pick?

So after looking on different aspects of these note taking solutions, which one is really better? Simplenote or Onenote?

OneNote is good for almost everybody

Granted that the app is a bit bloated, Onenote is still the best Note taking solution for normal users. Not only it is feature rich but also Onenote offers better flexibility than even some paid alternatives.
In case you are a student, or you need to work with photos, Onenote is the only winner for you in Simplenote vs Onenote comparison.

simplenote vs onenote
Onenote feels like a Word Processor

Simplenote is for some specific users

Simplenote, while being too limited compared to OneNote, is still a worth consideration for many cases. Writers, Bloggers and creative people find its minimalism useful.
Programmers and developers can benefit from its excellent markdown support. If you need to focus while jotting down notes and you don’t have needs for image support or a stylus, you should be going with Simplenote.

After using OneNote for 2 Years, I have switched to Simplentoe
After using OneNote for 2 Years, I have switched to Simplentoe

Which one do you prefer?

After talking about Onenote vs Simplenote on many points, which one do you prefer and why? Share with others in the comments below.
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